Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sex and the lezzie

Annie and I have always enjoyed watching Sex and the City episodes on DVD, and we're looking forward to seeing the movie this weekend with my mom.

Our lives couldn't be any more different from the lives of the characters in the show. We don't care about shoes or clothes. We don't even like to shop (although Annie likes it more than I do). We could care less about trendy things. I hate martinis. And parties.

We love Manhattan, but just to visit. And when we're there we go to the museums and walk for miles through Central Park and along the city streets in our sensible shoes--not to clubs or trendy places.

Those trappings of the show, while fun, aren't what make it so great. What makes Sex and the City good is this: great writing, rich characters, and humor that bumps up against poignancy. (One reviewer called the movie "existential haute couture.")

There are a lot of lesbians out there who love this show that features four very heterosexual women. Oh, wait a minute--there's the episode where Samantha boinks a woman, but she doesn't like it a whole lot. And there are several gay male characters. Still, the focus of a lot of the show is the woman/man mating dance, normally not a big feature of most of what I'm drawn to view or read. But Sex and the City has four funny, complex female central characters who are irresistible.

And now there's another way I connect with the show, albeit at a slant: Cynthia Nixon, who plays Miranda, has a woman partner, Christine Marinoni. Cynthia was married to a man and then one day it became clear she was with Christine. I love that Christine isn't in the biz. Sure, Ellen and Portia de Rossi are pretty to look at, but Christine looks more like the women I know. Meaning, women who haven't been gussied up by Hollywood.

Cynthia had basically been under the radar until her relationship with Christine was reported in the media. In one article, Cynthia says this:

I never felt like there was an unconscious part of me around that woke up or that came out of the closet; there wasn’t a struggle, there wasn’t an attempt to suppress. I met this woman, I fell in love with her, and I’m a public figure.

I like she doesn't insist that she was "born that way." Instead she acknowledges sexuality as fluid. There's nothing wrong with being a lesbian or a bisexual woman (or a straight chick who loves girls!)--so there's nothing wrong with choosing to love who you love.


Jo A. T.B. said...

"So there's nothing wrong with choosing to love who you love."

What a powerful ending quote Kate.
Speaks volumes!! I've always admired strong women who weren't afraid to be who they are.

Also loved your poem Remnants, I can feel all the emotions of loss.
The setting with the birds and cows reminds me of where I live. Very nice! :)

Bookfraud said...

actually, i admire ms. nixon even more for coupling with a civilian rather than another actor -- and under the radar, at that. granted, she's not the biggest mega-star in the universe, but there's something to be said for partnering with a person who is vaguely normal. (matt damon did the same thing).

i'm sooooo tired of the born that way-it's a choice debate. like jo said, i think you captured the essence perfectly with your kicker.

Kate Evans said...

So if the star is coupling with a normal person, does that mean the normal person is actually crazy for coupling with a star? Ha.

Yeah, the tired/born that way is so old. That's why I like the WHO GIVES A SHIT? response the best. Especially since I'm a flaming bisexual. Hey, as a bisexual was I BORN this way, or do I choose to be this way?

Jo: Thanks for your kind comments. You have such a loving attitude toward life.

Lisa Nanette Allender said...

Kate--you have it, woman, spot-on!
I too, am flaming for women AND men. I think you fall in love with beauty: a beautiful voice, a way someone has of expressing herself or himself, the way she or he looks at you... and you stay in love because your connection has become even richer, more about learning from each other....

Becky C. said...

kate, I so much like fludity- "born that way" comment--I generally agree with what you are saying--but it is too lengthy to go into in a short comment. But then, even though I don't totally buy the rigid "born that way" position--(although in my case it seems I pretty much was)--I find myself getting into trouble--one, I have suggeted that men and women may generally be different-- in the fluidity--this gets me in trouble with gay guys and feminists and queer activists generally

And then, I find myself hardening the positon of "yes--born that way" when I am in a politcal discussion--arguing against the homophobic position which is always that homosexuality unlike race, is "a choice".

Ok, I bit off way too much on way too big a subject for a comment, and it does not help I was toking earlier--but I hope it made some sense.


Kate Evans said...

Lisa: I love what you say here. Thanks.

Becky: I understand getting roped into the "born that way" response. It's hard to talk outside of it. I still think, though, that saying "Who cares?! There's nothing wrong with being queer" is the best response because "I was born that way" smacks of "I can't help it" which still positions queerness as a "problem." Ain't no problem here.

I do think there may be some gender differences as far as fluidity. I think men are socialized to be more rigid.

Kate Evans said...

ps to Becky: I love how you get in trouble with everyone! You are rare in that you don't walk a party line, no matter what the party.